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Beihai Park

Created more than a thousand years ago as an imperial garden, this huge green space wrapped around a lake is an oasis in Beijing’s bustling city center.

Beihai Park is Beijing’s tranquil inner-city oasis with shady trees, ever-changing flower exhibits and sacred buildings. This is one of the finest, and largest, examples of inner-city Chinese imperial gardens. Beihai mimics varying landscapes from different regions of China, so a visit here will give you a sense of the country’s diverse scenery in just a few hours.

Beihai Park was first built during the Liao Dynasty in the 10th century. Subsequent emperors have added to it. Most of the surviving buildings were erected under the reign of Qianlong Emperor of the Qing Dynasty, which ended just over 100 years ago.

Explore the meticulously maintained grounds of this historical royal park. Walk or cycle around the botanical gardens, enter centuries-old temples and pavilions, and watch locals as they exercise or play. They often also sing and dance for the gathering crowds. In winter, the ice-skating rink is fun for children.

Beihai is Mandarin for “North Sea” and more than half of the park is a lake. Rent a boat from one of the park’s piers to circle the man-made islets. On Jade Flowery Islet, admire the park’s famous landmark: A 1651 Tibetan shrine known as the White Dagoba. Cross the Doushan Bridge to the eastern shore and admire the Painted Boat Studio and the idyllic Hao Pu Creek Garden.

Don’t miss the eye-catching Nine-Dragon Wall on the northern shore of the lake. In the park’s southwestern corner, visit the Circular City with its large stone walls, towers, pavilions and Buddha statue.

Beihai Park is located in the Xicheng District, just northwest of the Forbidden City. The public park, which has on-site restaurants, is open daily. The park is open longer after dark in spring and summer. There is a small admission fee.

Get to the park on foot, or by bike or public transport. You can hire an English-speaking tour guide to take you there. Just outside the northern gate is a bike rental outlet.


Guide to Exploring around Beihai Park


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Best Lodging Options Near Beihai Park

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Beijing Hebei Yingbin Hotel
Beijing Hebei Yingbin Hotel

Beijing Hebei Yingbin Hotel

Anmennei Steet, Dongcheng District, Beijing, Beijing
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Xicheng, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Zhongnanhai, Forbidden City, and The Palace Museum. Wangfujing Street and Tiananmen Square are also within 2 mi (3 km). Tian'anmen West Station is 27 minutes by foot and Xisi Station is 27 minutes.

    King Parkview Hotel $42
    King Parkview Hotel

    King Parkview Hotel

    No.55 Shatan Hou Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing, Beijing
       
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Xicheng, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Jingshan Park and Forbidden City. Wangfujing Street and The Palace Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km). Dongsi Station is 20 minutes by foot and Zhangzizhonglu Station is 29 minutes.

      Pan Pacific Beijing $118
      Pan Pacific Beijing

      Pan Pacific Beijing

      No. 2 Huayuan Street, Xicheng District, Beijing
         
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Xicheng, this luxury hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Beijing Financial Street and within 3 mi (5 km) of Tiananmen Square and Beihai Park. Forbidden City and Wangfujing Street are also within 3 mi (5 km). Lingjing Hutong Station is 8 minutes by foot and Xidan Station is 11 minutes.

        Beijing Xinghaiqi Holiday Hotel
        Beijing Xinghaiqi Holiday Hotel

        Beijing Xinghaiqi Holiday Hotel

        No. 89-3 Dianmen East Avenue, Beijing, Beijing
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Xicheng, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Nanluoguxiang, Wangfujing Street, and Forbidden City. Tiananmen Square and The Palace Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km). Zhangzizhonglu Station is 17 minutes by foot and Beixinqiao Station is 24 minutes.

          Redwall Hotel
          Redwall Hotel

          Redwall Hotel

          No.31 North Shatan Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing, Beijing
             
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Dongcheng, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of National Art Museum of China, Forbidden City, and Wangfujing Street. Tiananmen Square and The Palace Museum are also within 2 mi (3 km). Dongsi Station is 17 minutes by foot and Zhangzizhonglu Station is 20 minutes.

            Jingshan Garden Hotel $90
            Jingshan Garden Hotel

            Jingshan Garden Hotel

            No.68c Sanyanjing Hutong, Dongcheng District, Beijing
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Dongcheng, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Jingshan Park, Forbidden City, and South Luogu Lane. Beihai Park and Bell and Drum Towers are also within 2 mi (3 km). Zhangzizhonglu Station is 18 minutes by foot and Dongsi Station is 18 minutes.

              Beijing Shichahai Apartment International
              Beijing Shichahai Apartment International

              Beijing Shichahai Apartment International

              No.57 Dianmen West Street, West District, Beijing, Beijing
                 
                3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Xicheng, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Lotus Market, Forbidden City, and Wangfujing Street. Tiananmen Square and The Palace Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km). Zhangzizhonglu Station is 25 minutes by foot and Beixinqiao Station is 27 minutes.

                Beijing Homekey Hotel
                Beijing Homekey Hotel

                Beijing Homekey Hotel

                No. 15 Yu'er Hutong, Nanluogu Lane, Dongcheng District, Beijing, Beijing
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Xicheng, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Lotus Market, Wangfujing Street, and Forbidden City. Tiananmen Square and The Palace Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km). Zhangzizhonglu Station is 20 minutes by foot and Beixinqiao Station is 22 minutes.